Ep06 – The personal ramblings of Przemek/brains hardware vs. software and mindfulness

cyborg

I’m aware that those ramblings of mine won’t be as popular as those more relatable for general public (like other bloggers tend to write), but do not be misled – those underneath are very personal to me, because I really think about such things on daily basis.

One of the questions which is bugging me lately is the software vs. hardware of our brains. Let me explain: If you would to measure intellectual potential of given person – to some extent you would like to know if he is genetically capable of great results, you would be interested in all disorders that person could have and all the bio-genic, hardcore and hardware factors that makes his/her brain.

But then that would be accurate just to some very broad point, simply because most of ours intellectual capabilities come from the software, the way we process information, methods of thinking or the thinking tools. Because of those tools human population experiences what’s called the “Flynn effect” (or the Lynn-Flynn effect as some argue, and rightly so, because Richard Lynn was the first to describe it). It means that if we would to test by today’s standards people’s IQ in 1930 they would score average of 80. It is obviously too short period for evolution to make such change, but we are all more proficient in using contemporary thinking tools like percentage, scientific method, deduction etc. It is our methods of thinking that evolved.

Though this argument it makes itself clear to me that even average brain can produce great results if provided with decent training in using elegant thinking tools. Also there is my concern – no one teaches us directly about them. Making use of methods of thought cultivation is the closest we can get to “make me more intelligent” pill.

It isn’t that easy, I must admit, but wouldn’t it be completely arrogant to state something like “well, being mindful all the time is hard – I am intelligent enough the way I am”? I think there are two great ways to stay mindful – being observant and hypothesizing as much as one can. Being observant as in opposition to “just see” things. Observe consciously, think if something is worth remembering and engage all your senses if it is (to more successfully memorize). Hypothesize as in opposition for taking things for granted and allowing your storytelling brain to rationalize everything for you using stereotypes, mental shortcuts, and thinking traps. Instead, be curious, question, don’t let others dismiss you if you don’t understand their actions.

This is where I’m going to stop. I myself want to be more intelligent and struggle with daunting task of staying mindful all the time. I won’t suggest that this way of being is happier, although I would like that to be true. I would also love to discuss the matter with you, knowing WordPress community that could turn to be just incredible. What’s your point on this then? Please, share.
– Przemek Kucia

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